Judicial Separation and Family Law Reform Act 1989

Safeguards to ensure applicant's awareness of alternatives to separation proceedings and to assist attempts at reconciliation.

5

5. (1) A solicitor, if any, acting for an applicant for a decree of judicial separation shall, prior to the making of an application for a decree of judicial separation—

( a) discuss with the applicant the possibility of reconciliation and give to him the names and addresses of persons qualified to help effect a reconciliation between spouses who have become estranged, and

( b) discuss with the applicant the possibility of engaging in mediation to help effect a separation on an agreed basis with an estranged spouse F4 [ , give to the applicant the names and addresses of persons who provide a mediation service and inform the applicant of the matters referred to in sections 10 and 11 of the Mediation Act 2017 ], and

( c) discuss with the applicant the possibility of effecting a separation by the negotiation and conclusion of a separation deed or written separation agreement.

(2) An application for judicial separation shall be accompanied by a F4 [ statutory declaration made by the solicitor ], if any, acting on behalf of the applicant that he has complied with the provisions of subsection (1) of this section and, where a solicitor does F4 [ not so declare, ] the court may adjourn the proceedings for such period as it deems reasonable for the applicant’s solicitor to discuss with the applicant the matters referred to in that subsection.

(3) F5 [ ]